Painting Prodigy Penetrates the Art World

Is Aelita Andre, 8, the Next Picasso?

January 17th, 2015 by Nathaniel Sher

Nearly every kid with access to some paint and paper has created what an art critic might call an “abstract” work of art. So why is it that the eight-year-old Australian abstract expressionist, Aelita Andre, has garnered so much more attention than the average kid artist?
The answer to this question is twofold, and the first part is as simple as the latter is complex. To begin, Aelita has had an enormous amount of support from her parents, Michael Andre and Nikka Kalashnikova. A cinematographer and photographer respectively, Aelita’s parents have provided her with more than just some paint and paper; they’ve given her access to her own studio and a seemingly endless supply of painting materials. In addition, it was their connections within the Melbourne art industry that initially shined the spotlight on Aelita.
When her daughter was less than two years old, Kalshnikova presented some of Aelita’s works anonymously to Mark Jamieson, the director of the Brunswick Street Gallery who represented her own photography. Impressed by the works, Jamieson decided to exhibit them alongside Kalashnikova’s. When he later discovered Aelita’s identity, Jamieson was hesitant, but continued to advertise them anyway. From then on, her fame only grew. At the shockingly young age of four, Aelita landed a solo exhibition at the Agora Gallery  -More-


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